Children who attended the residential school

The remains of 215 children have been found at the Kamloops Indian Residential School in Canada. the school was set up for indigenous, native- American children, it has been revealed.

Some of those children were as young as three years old, it has been revealed.

The children were students at the Kamloops Indian Residential School in British Columbia that closed in 1978, according to the Tk’emlúps te Secwépemc Nation.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau described the discovery as heartbreaking. 

The remains are thought to be from the colonial era in Canada’s residential school system, which forcibly separated indigenous children from their families. The policy was a form of cultural genocide, according to a six-year investigation into the now-defunct system found in 2015.

According to the investigation, between the 1840s to the 1990s young children were subjected to horrific physical abuse, rape, malnutrition and other atrocities suffered by many of the 150,000 children who attended the schools, typically run by Christian churches on behalf of Ottawa.

More than 4,100 children died while attending residential school. The deaths of the 215 children buried in the grounds of what was once Canada’s largest residential school are believed to not have been included in that figure and appear to have been undocumented until the discovery.

In a statement, British Columbia Assembly of First Nations Regional Chief Terry Teegee called finding such grave sites “urgent work” that “refreshes the grief and loss for all First Nations in British Columbia.”

Investigators stressed that this was unlikely to be the only residential school that treated children in this way.

The Tk’emlúps te Secwépemc Nation said it was engaging with the coroner and reaching out to the home communities whose children attended the school. They expect to have preliminary findings by mid-June.

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